Amazon Might Be the Most Valuable, But Which Brand is the Most Powerful in 2018?

February 5, 2018

Amazon has leapfrogged both Apple and Google to claim its spot as the most valuable brand in the world, reports Brand Finance in its latest annual brand rankings report [pdf]. Amazon ($150.8B brand value) edged Apple ($146.3B) for the distinction, as both registered strong gains to move ahead of Google. But neither cracked Brand Finance’s list of the most “powerful” brands.

As part of its report, Brand Finance ranks brand strength based on factors such as familiarity, loyalty, promotion, marketing investment, staff satisfaction and corporate reputation.

On this measure Disney (with a composite score of 92.3 on a 100-point scale) emerged on top, continuing a yo-yo ride in the rankings. In 2016, it was first, before falling to 6th last year and then rebounding back into the top spot this year.

Disney supplanted last year’s leader LEGO, which itself fell to 6th (90.6) this year. If it takes the same ride as Disney, it’ll be back on top next year…

Rounding out the top 5 in terms of brand strength this year are Visa (91.6), Ferrari (91.5), Neutrogena (90.9), and somewhat surprisingly given its struggles over the past year, Facebook (90.8).

Only 3 of the top 10 most valuable brands are also among the 10 strongest brands. As it is, each of them is a tech company: Facebook (5th-strongest); Google (#7); and Microsoft (#10).

Both Facebook and Microsoft are new entrants to the top 10 most “powerful” brands this year, joining Neutrogena as the only brands new to the list. They took the place of Nike (last year’s #3), NBC (#7 last year) and McKinsey (#10 last year).

Most Valuable Brands

Amazon’s rise to the top of the brand value rankings this year was fueled by a 42% increase in brand value. Apple almost matched it with a 37% increase. Both were enough to push them ahead of Google, which registered the slowest climb (+10% to $120.9B) of the top 5 brands, each of which are from the tech industry.

Rounding out the top 5 in brand value this year are Samsung (+39% to $92.3B) and Facebook (+45% to $89.7B), the latter of which had the biggest jump in the rankings (+4 spots) among the top 10.

Three of the top 10 most valuable brands registered a decline in value: AT&T (-5% to $82.4B); Verizon (-5% to $62.8B); and Walmart (-1% to $61.5B).

Some other stats on the most valuable brands:

  • Eight of the top 10 brands are based in the US, with Korea (Samsung) and China (ICBC) the only countries featured;
  • Tech brands accounted for almost one-quarter (23%) of top 500 brands’ combined value;
  • US brands represented 43% of the top 500 brands’ value, down from 48% a decade earlier, while Chinese brands rose to account for 15%, up from 3%.

The complete report can be found here [pdf].


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